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In International journal of computer assisted radiology and surgery

PURPOSE : An endocytoscope is a new type of endoscope that enables users to perform conventional endoscopic observation and ultramagnified observation at the cell level. Although endocytoscopy is expected to improve the cost-effectiveness of colonoscopy, endocytoscopic image diagnosis requires much knowledge and high-level experience for physicians. To circumvent this difficulty, we developed a robust endocytoscopic (EC) image classification method for the construction of a computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) system, since real-time CAD can resolve accuracy issues and reduce interobserver variability.

METHOD : We propose a novel feature extraction method by introducing higher-order symmetric tensor analysis to the computation of multi-scale topological statistics on an image, and we integrate this feature extraction with EC image classification. We experimentally evaluate the classification accuracy of our proposed method by comparing it with three deep learning methods. We conducted this comparison by using our large-scale multi-hospital dataset of about 55,000 images of over 3800 patients.

RESULTS : Our proposed method achieved an average 90% classification accuracy for all the images in four hospitals even though the best deep learning method achieved 95% classification accuracy for images in only one hospital. In the case with a rejection option, the proposed method achieved expert-level accurate classification. These results demonstrate the robustness of our proposed method against pit pattern variations, including differences of colours, contrasts, shapes, and hospitals.

CONCLUSIONS : We developed a robust EC image classification method with novel feature extraction. This method is useful for the construction of a practical CAD system, since it has sufficient generalisation ability.

Itoh Hayato, Nimura Yukitaka, Mori Yuichi, Misawa Masashi, Kudo Shin-Ei, Hotta Kinichi, Ohtsuka Kazuo, Saito Shoichi, Saito Yutaka, Ikematsu Hiroaki, Hayashi Yuichiro, Oda Masahiro, Mori Kensaku


CAD, Endocytoscopy, Machine learning, Pathological pattern classification, Texture analysis